It happens in a lawyer’s practice that he or she cannot handle all cases. Lawyers refer cases to each other for various reasons. They may lack expertise, have no right to act in a certain jurisdiction or just be overloaded with cases. Before you decide to refer a case, consider these tips that will help you not to put your client down.
Always Ask Client’s Permission
It is a requirement that the client should be notified about the case referral and the reasons for that. You need to get written consent of the client to this arrangement. If you don’t do this, you will violate bar rules and face liability. Your client has applied to you for some reason, and he or she should understand why you are referring their case.
Arrange a Referral Agreement or Fee-Splitting Agreement
When you are referring a case, you are entering into a contractual relationship with the attorney. You need to have a referral agreement with the referred attorney. You can specify the reasons for referral, the consent of the client as well as arrangements for a referral fee.
Don’t Refer a Case to an Attorney Who Has no Expertise
When you refer a case to another attorney, you always have the client’s best interest in mind. Never assign a case to an attorney that has no expertise in a specific practice area. Always check the profiles of the attorneys and assign to the one that best fits your case.
It goes without saying that you shouldn’t assign your case to a layperson as you will violate the Bar rules if you do that.
Don’t Pay Referral Services
It’s a common practice to apply to referral services to find an attorney to refer a case. The good news is that there is a platform in the market that charges no referral fee or any other fee for case referrals. We highly encourage you to sign up to AppearMe – a web and mobile app(App Store or Google Play) for case referrals. You can select among 5 and more attorneys who will respond to you when you post an announcement in the system.
AppearMe is a revolutionary move in the legal market. It is used not only for case referrals but also for finding an appearance attorney, a deposition attorney and court reporters. When you become a user, you can find these professionals or take up jobs as appearance/deposition attorney. It normally takes 2-3 minutes to post a request, and another 60 seconds on average for another attorney to respond to your request.